Archive for the ‘Ireland’ Category

Post-Primary Schools nationwide to receive High-Speed Broadband

Friday, June 26th, 2009

A 100mpbs Post Primary Schools Project which will deliver high-speed broadband connectivity to second level schools across the country has been launched by  Communications Minister Eamon Ryan TD.  The project is the result of cooperation between the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources and the Department of Education and Science, the National Centre for Technology in Education, HEAnet, and the  Higher Education Authority. The first seventy-eight schools taking part in the Project were announced at the launch in the Digital Hub Learning Studio.


Under the existing Schools Broadband Programme, primary and post-primary schools in Ireland can access a basic level of broadband connectivity. The 100mpbs Post Primary Schools Project marks the next phase in the Government’s ambition to develop our schools as world-class centres of e-learning and to educate the next generation of knowledge workers and digital entrepreneurs.

Launching the new Programme, Minister Ryan said, “We must equip our students with the skills and creativity they need to thrive in the new digital world we are entering. There is no surer way of preparing them than by bringing the Internet right into their place of learning and allowing them to experiment and interact online. Today’s announcement opens a door to them, to take part in Ireland’s digital future.”

This programme will provide world class infrastructure to enable our teachers and students access and exploit media rich online digital content and collaborate with colleagues on a world wide basis.  Schools will now be able to enrich and enliven their teaching and learning across all subjects on the post-primary curricula via these digital tools and online resources.

Schools have been selected against multiple criteria including geographical location, and an adequate mix of schools to ensure broad social inclusion. The speeds available are similar to those that are being offered to high-end national and multinational companies that operate in Ireland. They allow for the quick upload and download of material, instant connection to websites, and the increased and varied use of online applications.

The NCTE will  work with the 78 school to ensure the full benefits of this high speed broadband connection is availed of for learning and teaching. The NCTE will provide a range of support services including e-learning planning, continuing professional development, Scoilnet, online digital content, and technical advice and guidelines.

The Schools which will initially receive 100mpbs Broadband connections are:

Carlow Vocational School Kilkenny Road Carlow Carlow
St. Leo’s College Convent Of Mercy Dublin Road Carlow
St Caimin’s Community School Tullyvarraga Shannon Clare
St Flannan’s College Ennis Co Clare Clare
Cork College Of Commerce Morrison’s Island Cork Cork
Coláiste Choilm Ballincollig Co. Cork Cork
Christ King Girls’ Secondary School Half Moon Lane South Douglas Road Cork
Carrigaline Community School Waterpark Road Carrigaline Cork
Loreto Convent Letterkenny Co Donegal Donegal
Carndonagh Community School Carndonagh Lifford Donegal
St Eunan’s College Letterkenny Co Donegal Donegal
St Columbas College Stranorlar Co. Donegal Donegal
Loreto Community School Milford Co Donegal Donegal
Pobalscoil Chloich Cheannfhaola An Fálcarrach Leitir Ceanainn Donegal
Gairmscoil Mhic Diarmada An Leadhbgarbh Árainn Mhór Donegal
Coláiste Phobail Cholmcille Baile Úr Oileán Thoraí Donegal
Ballyfermot College of Further Education Ballyfermot Road Dublin 10 Dublin
Malahide Community School Broomfield Malahide Dublin
Loreto Secondary School Balbriggan Co Dublin Dublin
Castleknock Community College Carpenterstown Road Castleknock Dublin
Scoil Phobail Chuil Mhin Cluain Saileach Baile Atha Cliath 15 Dublin
Hartstown Community School Hartstown Dublin 15 Dublin
St Dominics College Cabra Dublin 7 Dublin
Mount Temple Comprehensive School Malahide Road Dublin 3 Dublin
St Josephs College Lucan Co Dublin Dublin
Coláiste Bríde New Road Clondalkin Dublin
St Mac Dara’s Community College Wellington Lane Templeogue Dublin
St Marks Community School Cookstown Rd Tallaght Dublin
St Benildus College Upper Kilmacud Rd Stillorgan Dublin
St Aidan’s Community School Brookfield Tallaght Dublin
Collinstown Park Community College Neilstown Rd. Rowlagh Dublin
St Pauls Secondary School Greenhills Dublin 12 Dublin
Rosmini Community School Grace Park Road Drumcondra Dublin
Presentation College Warrenmount Dublin 8 Dublin
St. Colmcille’s Community School Scholarstown Rd Knocklyon Dublin
St Joseph’s College Nun’s Island Galway Galway
Gort Community School Gort Co. Galway Galway
Presentation College Headford Co. Galway Galway
Calasanctius College Oranmore Co Galway Galway
Gairmscoil Éinne Oileain Arann Cill Rónain Inis Mór Galway
Coláiste Ghobnait Inis Oírr Oileáin Arann Galway
Coláiste Naomh Mhuire Convent Of Mercy Sallins Rd. Kildare
Salesian College Celbridge Co. Kildare Kildare
Maynooth Post Primary School Moyglare Rd Maynooth Kildare
St Kieran’s College Secondary School College Rd Kilkenny
Coláiste Íosagáin Portarlington Co. Laois Laoighis
Community School Carrick-On-Shannon Leitrim Leitrim
Castletroy College Newtown Castletroy Limerick
Crescent College Comprehensive Dooradoyle Rd Dooradoyle Limerick
Colaiste Chiarain Croom Co. Limerick Limerick
Presentation Secondary School Sexton Street Limerick Limerick
Mercy Secondary School Ballymahon Co Longford Longford
St Oliver’s Community College Drogheda Co. Louth Louth
Ó Fiaich College Dublin Road Dundalk Louth
St Vincent’s Secondary School Seatown Place Dundalk Louth
St Mary’s Diocesan School Beamore Road Drogheda Louth
St Louis Community School Kiltimagh Co Mayo Mayo
Davitt College Springfield Castlebar Mayo
St Peter’s College Dunboyne Co. Meath Meath
Community College Dunshaughlin Dunshaughlin Co Meath Meath
Beech Hill College Monaghan Co. Monaghan Monaghan
Killina Presentation Secondary School Rahan Tullamore Offaly
St Nathy’s College Ballaghaderreen Co Roscommon Roscommon
Summerhill College Sligo Co. Sligo Sligo
Cashel Community School Dualla Road Cashel Tipperary
St Paul’s Community College Browne’s Road Waterford City Waterford
St Angela’s Ursuline Convent Waterford Waterford
St Declan’s Community College Kilmacthomas Co Waterford Waterford
Moate Community School Church Street Moate Westmeath
Athlone Community College Retreat Road Athlone Westmeath
Our Lady’s Bower Retreat Rd. Athlone Westmeath
Good Counsel College New Ross Co Wexford Wexford
Mary Ward Railway Road Gorey Wexford
Vocational College Enniscorthy Co Wexford Wexford
Loreto Secondary School Vevay Rd Bray Wicklow

Hanafin urges unemployed to upskill

Monday, May 18th, 2009

More than 50,000 young people signing on the Live Register are being urged to improve their education, skills and qualifications during the recession.

Over the coming week the Department of Social and Family Affairs will post a letter to all 18 to 25-year-olds on jobseeker’s allowance advising them to look at the options available through their local VEC and adult education access programmes.

Minister Mary Hanafin said improving skills will be the key to economic recovery.

She said: “Young people should not see signing on the Live Register as their future — they should look to see what supports and opportunities are available for them throughout the country.

“We know that people of all skill levels are losing their jobs.

“Young people who may have opted out of the formal education and training opportunities, when the draw of high wages during the boom years was irresistible, are now more likely to remain unemployed if they are not actively upskilling and gaining new expertise.”

Ms Hanafin said the Government is now providing, through Fás, a total of 128,000 training and activation places for unemployed people this year, in addition to some 147,000 places available in further education programmes.

A cut in jobseeker’s allowance payment rates for 18 and 19-year-olds is also aimed at motivating them into taking up full-time training, she said.

“This measure was specifically introduced from this month to help young people gain skills which will give them a route into employment and so help them avoid becoming welfare-dependent from a young age,” Ms Hanafin added.

Source: Irish Times

eLearning Partnership announced with City of Galway VEC

Thursday, April 16th, 2009

City of Galway Vocational Education Committee, (CGVEC), has engaged with a global elearning provider Learn Skills in a strategic partnership to create and implement a strategy to develop and establish a lifelong learning culture in Galway City. Learn Skills will provide its significant technical and pedagogical assets, with the CGVEC leading the engagement of the local education community, encouraging the embracing of the lifelong learning programme offering through its own teaching network and via its various involvements through the wider community. Learn Skills is an innovative learning solutions provider, founded by an experienced group of on-line learning specialists, and driven by a mission to deliver the best technology-based solutions for learning. Learn Skills is headquartered in Ireland and is building on the experience and successes of the Irish e-learning industry to develop a commanding global presence.

It is a company founded on the belief that at the heart of any successful organization, you’ll find a unique combination of excellence, openness and innovation; and most importantly, people that are passionate about learning and delivering value to the end-user. At Learn Skills you will find dedicated and talented individuals that are steadfastly building a leading learning technology solutions provider.

Learn Skills was born out of the belief that in a Knowledge Society, organisational and individual effectiveness depends on the consistent application of learning and a committment to continuous personal development and lifelong learning. We believe our most valuable asset is our people and our goal is to help everyone learn better, faster and smarter through the use of technology enhanced learning tools and products.

The challenges presented by the Knowledge Society demand even greater collaboration between academia and industry. Consequently, Learn Skills is based at the National University of Ireland in Galway, at the heart of a technology innovation hub. There, the  company benefits from the research & development capacity of a leading international University and research institution.

Irish Hardware Skillnet invites Learn Skills to attend the Hardware / DIY Home Garden Show

Friday, January 23rd, 2009
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Learn Skills is placed to announce that it will have a stand at this years Hardware / DIY Home Garden Show (www.irishhardwarefair.com) which takes place on Sunday 1st February (10am – 6pm) and Monday 2nd February 2009 (10am – 5pm) at the RDS Simmonscourt, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4.  This biannual trade only show attracts Hardware DIY Garden Centre and Building Materials retailers and suppliers from the whole island of Ireland and the footfall is in the thousands each day.

Learn Skills will have its stand within the “Training Village”, on Sunday 1st February (10am – 6pm) where we will showcase our comprehensive range of web-based staff training materials, but also launch our newly acquire Retail Training Units which deliver training in all key skills associated with a productive retail employee.  Learn Skills has been invited by the Irish Hardware Skillnet who aims to facilitate Learn Skills:

  • meeting key people from our member companies on a one to one basis
  • discussing training options
  • providing information packs
  • networking with fellow trainers & companies in the network

As well as Hardware/DIT the show will feature a substantial number of top industry exhibitors from the Garden and Home Section.  Over 2,000 retailers from Ireland, North and South, are set to descend on the Show over the two days. The event gives them an opportunity to preview and forward order new season products.  The event is a major showcase for new products and items,like Learn Skills Retail Training and the Learn Skills platform,  which will most likely be seen in homes throughout the country over the next year or so.  It is the only Trade Show of its kind in Ireland, and will be the biggest event since the show started back in 1996.

Ms Catherine Shiels, President of the Irish Hardware & Building Materials Association, says “Retailers and exhibitors will make valuable contacts at the Show with outstanding potential for new profit opportunities. The Show will be the launch pad for numerous new products that will find their way into retailers to be enjoyed by householders across the country.”

Members of the Irish Hardware & Building Materials Association (IHBMA) Board, Steering Committee and HR / Training Managers from our Network member companies will be in attendance during both days. This presents a wonderful opportunity for Learn Skills to present their products & services to companies, build partnerships and generate business for 2009.

Sean Griffin, Co-Founding Director of Learn Skills, says “The Hardware / DIY Home Garden Show will provide us with the perfect showcase for our Retail Training Units and lead to an enhanced profile within the Irish market for the efficient and effective delivery of cost effective staff training.”

What is the Importance of Change Management in Your Organisation?

Sunday, October 19th, 2008

By Steve Grant

Change management is one of the most important disciplines of Information Technology Infrastructure management. The Wikipedia defines change management as “The objective of Change Management in this context is to ensure that standardized methods and procedures are used for efficient and prompt handling of all changes to controlled IT infrastructure, in order to minimise the number and impact of any related incidents upon service.”

Change management was always an integral part of business management, but with emergence of Information technology it gathered seriousness. Information Technology Infrastructure management is one broad term which encompasses all the elements necessary to ensure smooth functioning of business processes which may be threatened due to technological problems or other incidents. It’s the “change is rule” attitude (as coined by some experts) that forced these businessmen to change their attitude towards change management. Good change management techniques always help the businessmen to adapt and adopt new ways of doing business. Change management is not merely implementation of new techniques to cope up with a change within the organisation; rather it is a discipline of Information technology infrastructure managementwhere changes are managed with a more systematic, reliable, rigorous and disciplined approach. Changes are brought into system when the integrity of business organisation is challenged due to some incidents or customer requests or technological updates.

Process of change management unfolds through following steps

1. Identifying the need for change in organisation.
2. Designing need specific changes to curb with the requirement of the organisation.
3. Making others understand why change is necessary for the proper functioning of the organisation.
4. Altering the organisational process like processes, technology and performance meters to incorporate the changes.
5. Managing the production and changes to ensure that customer and the stakeholder continues to be bonded with each other over the long run.

According to Wikipedia Change management involves management of process related to Hardware, communications equipment and software, system software, and all documentation and procedures associated with the running, support and maintenance of live systems.

Project management is another aspect of change management, which needs to incorporate its values for proper functioning. There are some touch points between project management and change management. Project management is all about handling change with elance. It is defined as the discipline of planning, organising and managing resources in order to ensure the successful completion of projects. Aim of any project management endeavour is to attain the successful results despite of constraints like space, time, changes, quality, time and budget. Every project is developed around some permutation and combination methodology. Changes are made to the existing methodology in order to avoid potential failures. Identifying, managing and controlling changes become important for the smooth functioning of the Project. According to some experts “project is change and change is project”. So it becomes difficult to differentiate or draw a line between the inter reliability of project management and change management.

So change management holds utmost importance in the world of business where things are assessed on the basis of their perfection and capability to address the needs of customers and clients.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Steve_Grant

To learn more about change management check out our Change Management Course and if you are interested in learning more about project management, check out our Effective Project Management Course.
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The Wheel Launches 2008 Training Links Grant Programme

Thursday, October 16th, 2008

Ireland – 16th September, 2008 – Training Links is an innovative support service developed by the Wheel to enhance the skills and employability of people working in the community and voluntary sector in Ireland.

Training Links offers funding opportunities to groups of organisations that chose to come together and work collaboratively to address their shared training needs as a Training Network. The current Training Links programme is running from September 2008 to mid 2010.

The Training Network is subsidised by The Wheel – with funding from the National Training Fund – over the period of the programme to develop and implement strategic, innovative and cost-effective training and development solutions for its members which they would be not be in a position to undertake as effectively on their own.

In addition to the provision of substantial financial subsidies to the Training Networks directed at training provision, this programme provides much-needed opportunities for sectoral co-operation and shared learning.

Applications are now welcomed for Training Links 2008-2010, an innovative grant programme developed by The Wheel to address the collective training needs of community and voluntary organisations in Ireland. Modelled on the approach developed by Skillnets Limited for the private sector Training Links encourages community and voluntary organisations to unite in “training networks” to identify shared training needs and to apply for a grant to address these needs. This approach offers participants significant cost efficiencies and other collective benefits.

Find Out More

Visit the Training Links site for further information:


Not Enough Hours, Time Management

Tuesday, October 14th, 2008

After the post earlier about Getting Things Done, there is another Book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” which works very well with our Time and Stress Management course.

Have a look at this overview to learn more about Covey’s Book, which gives you a good insight about the 4 Quadrant Eisenhower System (aka Eisenhower Matrix) which is also discussed by the RTÉ show “Not Enough Hours”.  This gives you a nice overview about prioritizing your task list on the RTÉ website. That program is presented by NLP Master Trainer Owen Fitzpatrick.

‘Most things which are urgent are not important, and most things which are important are not urgent.’
Dwight D. Eisenhower

You could also use the following sketch video by Lodewijk to learn more in addition to our Time and Stress Management course :

If you cannot afford either time or money for a personal life skills course or NLP course or something like that, have a look at our time and stress management course, which will give you a great opportunity to enhance and improve your time management skills.

Here is a very informative lecture about time management.

Companies urged to address staff turnover

Monday, October 13th, 2008

Ireland – 22nd August, 2008 – Research and advisory firm Computer Economics has been conducting research into why IT staff stay in their jobs to give organisations a better idea on how to retain employees.

IT managers perceive staff turnover rates to be getting worse because of the slowing economy and some IT skills being in short supply, the firm said.

“The first question organisations need to answer is whether their turnover rates are outside the norm and need addressing,” said the Computer Economics report. “The typical organisation in today’s environment can view a five per cent [staff] turnover as a normal cost of doing business.”

The survey of 71 IT organisations found that those with stronger education and training programmes have lower than average turnover rates, and that staff prefer good training to increased pay.

“IT managers often worry that investments in training will be reaped by other organisations when IT workers shop their new skills around,” said John Longwell, director of research for Computer Economics. “But this study indicates that investing in training is actually the best way to retain employees.”

The factors commonly perceived as influencing staff turnover are:

  • Education and training opportunities
  • Flexible schedules
  • Work environment
  • Social environment
  • Pay
  • Insurance benefits
  • Employee recognition programmes
  • Paid time off
  • Retirement programmes
  • Telecommuting opportunities

“While offering competitive salaries and benefit packages may be important for recruitment, providing quality-of-life incentives and enhancing working environments are more important for retention,” Longwell concluded.

The report advised organisations to distinguish between programmes to recruit qualified employees and programmes to retain staff.

Source: TechCentral.ie

Investors of the future learn skills

Monday, October 13th, 2008

Galway Independant – 14th May, 2008 – More than 350 secondary school students from Galway and Leitrim descended on Sligo IT last week to learn more about good financial habits for life in the extended learning workshop, Bank Your Future, the unique national financial education initiative by Junior Achievement, generously supported by Bank of America.

Students from Calasanctius College in Oranmore were among the 350 attendees. “Empowering young people with the skills surrounding the complex area of personal finance will allow these students not only a firm understanding of their future financial choices and responsibilities but also of the importance of their career choices and potential to create fulfilling and independent lives,” said Mr Ian O’Doherty, Ireland Country Executive, Bank of America, launching Bank Your Future.

More than 700 students across Dublin, Leitrim, Cork and Galway will this academic year participate in this new initiative developed to educate students on how to establish good financial habits to carry them through their adult lives. Bank Your Future is a six-week programme taught in the classroom by independent business volunteers from a variety of business backgrounds.

Bank Your Future programme includes:

  • the importance of education and its role in improving potential earning power;
  • balancing salary and expenditure;
  • using credit and cash wisely;
  • the importance of saving;
  • the benefits of insurance;
  • creating and analysing the performance of a share portfolio.

Bank of America is one of the world’s largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk-management products and services. In Ireland Bank of America employs over 1,000 associates across its two facilities in Dublin and Carrick-on-Shannon providing financial products and services for individual customers and large corporations.

Junior Achievement, a worldwide organisation established in Ireland in 1995, brings enterprise education to young people throughout Ireland teaching them about the world of work, helping them to set goals, plan for their future and learn the skills necessary to succeed in a fast changing world. Junior Achievement aims to fill the gap where young people have no connection with business or a role model to inspire them to succeed in life. The organisation does this with the active and financial support of 150 leading Irish businesses across the commercial spectrum. Hands-on experiences help students to understand the economics of life. In partnership with businesses and educators, Junior Achievement brings the real world to young people, opening their minds to their potential.

Learn New Skills

Monday, October 13th, 2008

It’s been a crazy few months between banks and stock markets and the big recession that is slowly gripping the world.  In an atmosphere like this it is up to everyone to improve their employability and career prospects by learning new skills and upskilling.  You don’t need to wait until your employer arranges this or even leave it so late that your social welfare officer arranges it.  Take the initiative and seek out the training that can make a difference for you.  If you want to keep up with the times, your old skills must be continually sharpened and new ones must be acquired.

Always keep in mind the following:

  • There is no such thing as “Finished Learning.” One who stops learning, stops growing.  Work hard towards sharpening your Foundation and Transferable skills.  It pays to spend some time sharpening your axe before attempting to fell a tree.
  • Keep an eye open for new skills and master them. At the same time, improve the ones you already have.
  • Do some research to find out what skills are and will always be most valued in your industry.  Two sites that may help you here are ‘A Career Guide to Industries’ and ‘Tomorrow’s Jobs’.

Issues that people typically have include the following:

What can I do? – You can do whatever you want to. Right from cooking to eating, you will find information pertaining to any interest that you may have.

Where to look? – Keep your eyes and ears open. There’ll always be something happening in your locality to match your interest.

Universities/Colleges: – Usually, universities and colleges have clubs, societies and student groups which bring together students with similar interests. You can be sure to fit into at least one of them and learn from those who have more experience than you and build networks.

Leisure Centers & Gyms: – These are places where you will find people who like physical activity like hiking, swimming and traveling.

Evening Classes: – Collect details of all evening courses conducted in your area. Learn a language you don’t know, or get trained to do creative things like sewing or origami.

Volunteering: – Though not as glamorous as a lot of other things, the feel-good factor is immensely high! Giving something back to society is an amazing way to boost your morale. And of course, it looks impressive on your CV too and can be used to reinforce your skills and validate new ones.

Distance and Online Learning: – If you prefer to spend more time at home and if that’s the only hindrance you are facing to learning new skills, this is perfect for you. Learn Skills is one of the places where you can start hunting for relevant information about courses and as for online courses, it is the best place to start looking for what you want with a very comprehensive range of courses that cover both skills and compliance based training.  If you have any specific needs you can contact Learn Skills.

Source: CvTips.com article “Learn New Skills”.